New year, new decade! Resolution time!
We've had an amazing outdoor holiday this December with overnight tramping in the gorgeous snow dusted mountains of Nelson Lakes National Park and camping on the golden sand beached of Abel Tasman National Park. The full immersion and spectacular scenery ensured relaxation and readiness for another year and a brand new decade. Though we've done a fair bit of tramping, you can always do more and do it better.
When it comes to new year's resolutions, I have mixed feelings. The new year can provide the impetus for a change, but the hype can make us forget ourselves and set unrealistic and even unpleasant resolutions. As in, "I've never gone to the gym before, but for 2020 I'm pledging to get to the gym 5 days per week because my future self will definitely find that huge change manageable and enjoyable." Probably not. Drastic changes like swearing off chocolate, promising to ring your estranged sister weekly, and pledging to suddenly go to the gym 5 times per week are better started in small increments any time of the year. These are also bad resolutions because you can't win. Resolutions need to be measurable in that you can check them off and celebrate, as in "Yes, I did it!" Once achieved, set another goal. If you start small, you can building on successes. These little wins can keep the momentum going. For 2020 I'll go for small, achievable, and celebratable* goals.
Here are my tramping new year's resolutions for 2020 and beyond:
- Creating (at least) 3 lightweight tramping meals to serve at least 2 people. We suck at packing food. On our last tramping trip, one of our packs had 11 cans in it and weighed 40kg (88lbs). Our tramping meal rotation has been canned bean wraps, spaghetti with canned sauce, and frozen veggie sausages and fresh vegetables for first night of the trip. We often bring a box of cereal and boxed milk for breakfast. Once these meals are eaten the rubbish is bulky with cans and boxes. We have tried commercial dehydrated meals, but haven't found a delicious option and they are expensive for a family of four. This year, I'll work out some options. Starting with inspiration from this polenta pizza recipe in Wilderness Magazine.
- A walk a week. There have been periods in my life when I get out for an outdoor adventure several times per week. I loved it and felt so good for the time in nature and increased fitness. Somehow it's easy to stop doing things that are so good for us. This year, I'll get out at least once per week for a mini or macro adventure. A walk a week has a nice ring to it, but bike rides and swims count, too.
- Take Dan (9) on his first Great Walk. Last year, Dan (8) showed us he was more than ready to up his tramping game when he completed the Tongariro Crossing with a massive smile and heaps of energy left over. On overnight tramps, he carries all of his gear, food, and water. At his request, it's time for a longer more challenging tramp. We'll aim for a North Island adventure this time and set our sites on the South Island next year with Sadie (7... will be 8) in tow.
- Girls' adventure weekend twice per year. Okay, this one is a bit of a cheat as it's something I've been doing for the past few years. We have made some amazing memories at Crosbies Hut, Syme Hut, Whirinaki Forest, and on the Timber Trail, just to name a few. I'm putting it here because it's an important habit and beneficial to celebrate all the tramping wins, even (and perhaps especially) the ones I'm already doing.
- Publish a quarterly MegDrive tramping newsletter. This is the scariest one for me to put in writing! Since starting the MegDrive blog in 2017, the email membership list has grown and - huge confession - I've never sent out a newsletter. This is terrible, I know! To me it always feels a bit presumptuous to send out mass emails, even when people have subscribed. But I've been thinking about the blogs I subscribe to and how I look forward to reading the updates that arrive in my inbox. So I'm gonna do it.
A new decade is a great time to reflect on the past and plan for the future. Time to have another look at my Awesome Adventure Bucket List and make some more life happen.
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What tramping adventures are you planning for 2020? Do you have any resolutions?
*Celebratable should be a word.